Illustration: Japanese Kemari Match

Illustration: Japanese Kemari Match

Illustration of a Japanese Kemari Match

Illustration of a Japanese Kemari Match
license: public domain
source: Wikimedia Commons
author: Akisato Rito

A black and white illustration depicts eight Japanese men in traditional garb standing in a square court. They watch an airborne ball hanging high above their heads. The court is surrounded by a wooden lattice and each corner is marked with a tree.


Illustration: 1799


This illustration was pulled from the late 18th century Japanese text 巻之一. It depicts a match of kemari, a sport with similarities to hacky-sack or keep-up. In this game, up to eight players would take turns kicking a ball into the air, trying to keep it airborne.

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Japanese Kemari | History of Ball Sports | Aboriginal Woggabaliri

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Guttmann, A., & Thompson, L. (2001). Japanese sports: A history. Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Press.

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